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    Belgian Jihadist Hicham Chaib deceased, his family says

    © Belga
    © Belga

    Hicham Chaib, one of Belgian authorities’ most wanted Islamic State followers, is supposedly deceased. Family members posted farewell messages on the social network Facebook, reported Monday la Gazet van Antwerpen. “This is not the first time that he or other terrorist suspects are falsely declared as deceased,” comments, however, the federal court.

    Hicham Chaib, age 36, is on the list of the condemned persons whom the Belgian police services want most (“Belgium’s Most Wanted”).

    Having grown up in Borgerhout, in Antwerpen, he was one of the leaders of the terrorist group Sharia4Belgium. For he was the bodyguard and right hand of the organization’s founder, Fouad Belkacem.

    In 2012, he was leading a riot against police officers in an Antwerpen district, a fact for which he was condemned by default to a one-year sentence.

    In 2013, he left Belgium for Syria with a dozen other Sharia4Belgium partisans in order to fight alongside the Islamic State (ISIS). Hicham Chaib would have then been head of the religious police in Raqqa, an important post within the terrorist organization. He appears on several ISIS propaganda videos, in which he calls Muslims to join the caliphate.

    On 11 February 2015, he was sentenced to 15 years’ imprisonment, with immediate arrest at the closure of the trial against Sharia4Belgium.

    In 2016, he who calls himself Abu Hanifa, appears in the video claiming responsibility for the ISIS attacks in Zaventem and Maelbeek, at the end of which he executes a prisoner.

    Hicham Chaib had already been declared as dead in February 2017, following bombings on Raqqa. His family had then refuted this information.

    The federal court has neither confirmed nor invalidated the announcement of his decease, made this time by family members.

    Christopher Vincent
    The Brussels Times